Thomas Kirk Englebright

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Thomas Kirk Englebright
Thomas Kirk Englebright.jpg
Born (1978-11-24) November 24, 1978 (age 45)
Alma materVance Granville College
Known forMattress Capital and A Goodnight Sleepstore, CEO of Dark Horse Studios
Spouse(s)Macey Arden Long
RelativesChrystal Englebright (sister)
  • CEA Winner for Film
  • Top 100 Innovators Award

Thomas Kirk Englebright (born on November 24, 1978), known as Kirk Englebright, is an American serial entrepreneur and Studio Executive for Dark Horse Studios.[1] Under his leadership, Dark Horse Studios has transformed into a world-class film and development production campus located in Wilmington, NC. He has been recognized for his contributions and has received several awards. He was honored with the Top 100 Innovators Award in Wilmington, NC, and received the CEA Winner for Film award in 2023.

Early life and education

Kirk Englebright was born on November 24, 1978, in Oxford, North Carolina, to parents Wade Englebright and Lisa Englebright. Growing up in Oxford, he developed an early interest in business and entrepreneurship.

Englebright attended South Granville High School, where he completed his secondary education and graduated in 1997. Following his high school graduation, he enrolled in ACTT (Advanced Computer Training and Technology) for Programming, which further honed his skills in the technological field.

Eager to pursue his entrepreneurial aspirations, Englebright decided to pursue a nursing degree and business education at Vance Granville College. During his time at college, he gained valuable knowledge and insights into the business world, which would later prove instrumental in his successful career.

It was during his formative years that Englebright's passion for business began to take shape. He exhibited a keen interest in communications and recognized the potential for growth and success in this field. This early inclination towards business and communication would lay the foundation for his future endeavors.

Englebright's early life experiences and educational background played a crucial role in shaping his entrepreneurial mindset and setting him on the path to success in the business world.


Englebright's career in business and entrepreneurship spans several successful ventures and notable achievements. His journey began in the field of Communications, where he discovered his passion for business and embarked on a path of innovation and growth.[2]

After gaining valuable experience and knowledge, Englebright founded Englebright Communications in 2005. This marked the start of his entrepreneurial endeavors, where he showcased his skills in marketing, communication strategies, and business development.

In 2006, Englebright expanded his business interests by venturing into the furniture and bedding retail sector. He established Mattress Capital Inc., a retail store that quickly gained popularity and success. Englebright's astute business acumen and dedication to providing quality products and services helped Mattress Capital Inc. thrive and expand rapidly.

Within a short span of time, Englebright's retail empire grew, and he established multiple retail stores across North Carolina and South Carolina. By the age of 35, he had successfully established and managed 35 retail stores, solidifying his reputation as a skilled entrepreneur and business leader in the region.

In 2017, Englebright further demonstrated his business acumen by acquiring A Goodnight Sleepstore, a move that further expanded his presence in the retail industry. Recognizing his passion for business and his desire to explore new opportunities, Englebright founded Englebright & Long Holdings in 2019. This marked a significant milestone in his career as he diversified his business portfolio and explored new ventures.

In the same year, Englebright made a strategic investment by purchasing a 100,000 square-foot campus in Wilmington, North Carolina. This acquisition laid the foundation for his entry into the film industry. In 2020, Englebright established Dark Horse Studios, a premier film studio located in Wilmington. The studio quickly gained recognition for its state-of-the-art facilities and innovative production capabilities.[3]

Under Englebright's leadership, Dark Horse Studios played a pivotal role in boosting the film industry in North Carolina. The studio's contributions helped the state achieve record-breaking film revenues, reaching an impressive $416 million. In 2023, Dark Horse Studios announced a substantial expansion project, solidifying its position as a prominent player in the film production industry.

Englebright's entrepreneurial achievements have not gone unnoticed. He has been the recipient of prestigious awards and recognition. In Wilmington, NC, he was honored with the Top 100 Innovators Award, recognizing his innovative contributions to the local business community. Furthermore, Englebright received the CEA Winner for Film award in 2023, further cementing his reputation as a visionary entrepreneur in the film industry.

Englebright's dedication to his business ventures and his ability to identify opportunities for growth have established him as a prominent figure in the business and film production sectors. With his ongoing commitment to innovation and success, he continues to make significant contributions to the industries he operates in.

Personal life

Kirk Englebright leads a fulfilling personal life alongside his successful career. He has a son who was born in February 2015, bringing joy and happiness to his family.

In 2017, Englebright entered a new chapter of his life when he married Macey Arden Long. Together, they have built a loving and supportive partnership, providing a strong foundation for their shared journey.


  1. "DARK HORSE STUDIOS, INC". Retrieved 5 June 2023.
  2. "The WilmingtonBiz 100: The Innovators". WilmingtonBiz. Retrieved 5 June 2023.
  3. "CEA Film Winner: Meeting demand for film space". WilmingtonBiz. Retrieved 5 June 2023.

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